The Season for Sneezing is Here!

By Freya

Sunshine and longer days are a welcome change for many of us. But for those who suffer from hay fever, the arrival of Spring and Summer can wreak havoc. From late March to early September, the higher pollen count can bring with it a host of undesirable side effects.

In this article, we will be exploring the symptoms of hay fever, the available treatment options and the role that pharmacies play.

 

Hay fever symptoms

Most commonly, people with hay fever suffer from sneezing, coughing, a blocked or runny nose and itchy/watery eyes. However, different people are affected in different ways. Other symptoms can include:

  • Itchy throat, mouth, nose and ears
  • Loss of smell
  • Pain around the temples/forehead
  • Headache
  • Earache
  • Tiredness

Whilst these symptoms appear very similar to those of a common cold, they often last far longer: typically, weeks or even months.

 

Hay fever treatment

At present, there are no curative or preventative treatments available for hay fever. However, there are things you can actively do and avoid in order to help alleviate the effects. In addition, there are also different medications which can be used to relieve some of the symptoms.

The NHS advises taking measures to reduce exposure to pollen. These measures include staying indoors whenever possible, wearing wraparound sunglasses to better protect your eyes,  avoiding freshly cut grass, keeping doors and windows shut in the home, and vacuuming regularly.

 

The role of pharmacies

As hay fever affects different people in different ways, pharmacists are well-placed to offer tailored advice and provide helpful recommendations for suitable alleviatory medication. Despite there being no curative or preventative treatment options, pharmacists are still able to access and share a wealth of knowledge around medication that can help people.

Often the first port of call for people, pharmacists play a crucial role. It is precisely because of this accessibility, though, that we are seeing such a burden placed on pharmacies. Digital solutions, such as what we offer at Healthera, help to ease this burden by enabling easier and more time-efficient communication with patients. In addition, our technology enables patients to easily manage any repeat prescriptions and make re-orders when necessary. This not only saves valuable pharmacy time during an already busy season, it helps the patient access medication and advice whenever and wherever they need it.

 

Helpful resources

 

NHS advice

Pollen forecast